William and Ellen Evison had four daughters. So far I’ve blogged about:
This blog is about their oldest child, Cintha (aka Cynthia) Iona Evison and her husband, William Frederick Finch.
Cintha (Cynthia) Iona Evison and William Frederick Finch
This branch of my family tree has more twists and turns than an amusement park roller coaster ride!!
I hope that I will be able to explain the complexities of this part of my family tree so that you don’t get too confused LOL! Here goes —-
Cintha Iona Evison is my great aunt, sister to my great grandfather, William St. Thomas Evison. Normally her husband would be my great uncle by marriage.
However, Cintha’s husband, William Frederick Finch, is my great grandmother’s brother! So he is my great uncle outright, not just by marriage.
To put it another way — my great aunt Evison married my great uncle Finch!
Now that I’ve clarified that — not?
The next thing that makes things a bit confusing is that Cintha was also known as Cynthia and I couldn’t find her birth certificate. So I don’t know which name she was registered as, nor what her exact date of birth is. But I can come close by using the following “evidence”:
In the 1871 Census, her name is Cintha and she is 10 years old (born in the United States). That makes her year of birth about 1861.
In the 1881 Census, she is listed as Cintha Iona and she is 19 years old. That puts her year of birth about 1862.
In the 1891 Census (after she married William Finch), she “changed” her name to Cynthia and her age is recorded as 29 (year of birth = about 1862).
Her tombstone has the name, Cynthia, engraved on it. It says that she was 35 years, 8 months and 19 days old when she died on 17 Feb 1897. If I did the arithmetic correctly, that means that she was born on about 29 May 1861.
But where was Cintha (aka Cynthia) born? Well, from the various censuses, we know that she was born in the United States. Her middle name is Iona which is close in spelling to where her younger brother, William, was born — Ionia, Ionia County, Michigan (USA). Coincidence??
Sometime after the end of 1863 (when her brother, William, was born) and before the middle of 1866 (when her sister, Lucy Ann, was born), Cintha moved with her family from Michigan to Westminster Township, Middlesex County, Ontario (Canada), where likely she lived for the remainder of her life.
There are several small towns in Westminster Township and I don’t know exactly where she lived, but it was probably Lambeth.
Cynthia (aka Cintha) is buried in Scottsville Cemetery in Scottsville, Westminster Township, Middlesex County, Ontario (Canada) — which is very close by to Lambeth.
I don’t know exactly when Cintha and William married — but I can narrow it down using the documents that I found.
So I can assume that Cintha and William married sometime between 4 Apr 1881 and 27 Dec 1882. But I suppose one could narrow it down a bit more — nine months before their first child was born is March of 1882. 😉
There is a lot of “mystery” surrounding William! His death certificate says that he was born on 11 Sep 1862, but he’s listed in the 1861 UK Census, living with his parents in Wimbledon, Surrey County (UK).
The 1861 UK Census was taken the night of 7 Apr 1861 and William is recorded as being one year old. Frequently the census taker would record the age of a person on their next birthday. So William was likely born in 1860. Therefore, I think that his correct date of birth is 11 Sep 1860 and that he was born in Wimbledon, Surrey County (UK).
William’s mother died in 1863 when he was just a toddler. In 1871, he is living with his widowed father and sister on Gladstone Road in Wimbledon.
However, I could not find William in the 1881 census, either in the UK or in Canada. And I could not find any documentation to confirm when or where William emigrated to Canada. But he must have arrived sometime before March of 1882 — nine months before his first child was born in Ontario (Canada).
His occupation is listed as “labourer”.
As mentioned above, Cynthia died on 7 Feb 1897. In 1901, the widowed William is living with the Piper family in Westminster Township. He listed his birthdate as 11 Sep 1861 — but again, I think that his correct year of birth is 1860.
William re-married on Christmas Eve, 1907 — to the spinster, Isabella McNeil, daughter of Alexander McNeil and Catherine Mitchell. She was 41 years old when she married William so I doubt that they had any children together.
They married in Tempo (Westminster Township). Most of the village of Tempo was demolished in the 1950s to make way for the construction of Highway 401. The Presbyterian Church, where William and Isabella were likely married, escaped demolition and is still standing as of the date of this blog.
Another mystery!! I could not find William in the 1911 Canadian Census. And the only record that I could find that might be Isabella is a Bella Finch working as a domestic for the Davis family in Westminster Township.
Update on 12 Dec 2013
The 1921 Canadian Census has now been uploaded and indexed. I found a Bella Finch — who appears to be the same Bella Finch as in the 1911 Census — working as a housekeeper for Nell Davis and her brother, Dan, in Dorchester Township, Elgin County (Ontario).
According to a family tree on Ancestry, Isabella McNeil Finch died in 1931 in Lambeth (Westminster Township) and is buried in the Kilmartin Cemetery in Yarmouth Township, Elgin County, Ontario (Canada).
His cause of death: a cerebral haemorrhage with a contributory cause of senility.
William was buried in Scottsville Cemetery on 12 Jan 1935 — but I could not find a tombstone.
William Frederick Finch and Cintha (Cynthia) Iona Evison had five children — two boys and three girls, all born in Ontario (Canada).
- William Frederick Finch Jr. (b: 27 Dec 1882)
- Sarah Ellen “Nellie” Finch (b: about 1884)
- Joseph Wesley Finch (b: 5 Sep 1885)
- Emma Louisa Finch (b: 18 Sep 1887)
- Gertrude May Finch (b: 4 Sep 1890)
I’ll be writing individual blogs about the children and their descendants soon!
The Final Mystery
I received these two photographs from a descendant of William Frederick and Cintha Evison Finch. On the back of the photo on the left, it says “Daddy Finch”. The one on the right may be some of the Finch family.
I’m posting these hoping that someone will recognize the people in the photographs. If you do, please add a comment below. Thanks!